Industrial Training Fund (ITF) says it is working hard to help rejuvenate the country’s economy currently groaning under the yoke of COVID-19 induced recession.
Mr Joseph Ari, the Director-General of the Fund, stated this on Thursday in Makurdi during an interactive session with stakeholders.
It was reported that the interactive forum was organised by the Fund to discuss ways of conducting successful businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ari, represented by Dr Daniel Ewuga, ITF Area Manager in Benue, regretted the disruptive effects of the disease on the economy in spite of various interventions and financial injections by the Federal Government.
He recalled programmes like the Ease of Doing Business initiative and several others intended to reposition the economy, and expressed optimism that the interactive session would deepen the understanding of stakeholders in business conduct during the pandemic.
He said that with the soaring levels of unemployment in the country, it was pertinent for business owners to acquire new skills that were relevant to the prevailing circumstances.
Ari said it was necessary to harness the opportunities offered by the digital world to do business while observing the COVID-19 protocols.
He said that some of the programmes initiated by the organisation to help rejuvenate the economy included National Industrial Skills Development Program (NISDP), Women Skills Empowerment Program (CONSEP) and Skills Training Empowerment Program for Physically Challenged Persons (STEP-C).
He said that overtime, participants had observed some grey areas in their training modules and explained that such issues were usually resolved at such meetings.
Gov Samuel Ortom, represented by Mr Fidelis Annune, Acting Director of Industry, in a remark, commended the Fund for its training programmes, especially on skills acquisition.
He assured the organisation of government’s continued support and patronage in the discharge of its duties.
The guest speaker, Dr Stephanie Adelusi of the Benue State University, in her paper titled: “Tools and Managerial Skills Needed to Combat COVID-19 Pandemic Towards Sustaining Productivity and Service Delivery,” emphasised the need to upscale the workforce to overcome the challenges of COVID-19.
She said that the disease had created a new economic order forcing people to adopt new measures to cope with life.
Adelusi said that digitization had become necessary in running successful businesses, adding that all productions and delivery operations had to be digitized.
She suggested that virtual meetings be encouraged instead of physical meetings to save costs and maximize benefits.
According to her, such meetings should promote team engagements and encourage consistency of participants on such platforms.
The don said that all business owners had to invest in the digital world and culture to overcome the challenges posed by the disease.